"Now I lay me down to sleep ... I pray the Lord my soul to keep ... healthy and happy in every way ... with love and laughter filling each day. Please fill our hearts with compassion, tolerance and patience - especially for our Mom & Dad (they need LOTS of patience). Please look over all of our friends and family and ALL the children of the world, tonight. Amen."
I've been saying an evening prayer with the babies for as long as I can remember. Our prayers follow the same script, almost every time. It's only been recently that they too, will fold their little hands in prayer as soon as I start and they will babble along with me.
My day never feels entirely "done" until I say an evening prayer with the children. Even when I'm out of town on business, I ask that Charlie recite a prayer with the babies before bedtime.
Evening Prayer is that important to me.
I'll dive in to my thoughts on God and spirituality in another post ... but for now ... the important thing is that I most definitely believe in God. Infact, one of my favorite quotes - of all times - is "Everything has God's fingerprints on it."
Everything has God's Fingerprints on it.
That's pretty powerful.
When I think back on our years and years of infertility - I couldn't see the "holiness" in our struggles ... but now, I do.
When I think back on the serious health scares that both Charlie and I faced early in our marriage - I couldn't see the "holiness" in those struggles ... but now, I do.
When I think back on the ups and downs of life - including family feuds and Wars abroad - I couldn't see the "holiness'" in those struggles ... but now, I do.
The majority of the time - even in the most dire of situations - I am somewhat able to wrap my mind around the "holiness" and find comfort in God's presence. I'm not sure if this mentality makes me an optimist, or a believer. I'd like to think I'm a little of both.
But try as I might, I absolutely cannot wrap my mind around the horror that has rocked Utah the past few weeks. Lured away from her own back yard ... a beautiful little 5-year old girl ... was taken from her family. Forever. A monster that lived a few houses away ... a 20-year old beast from hell ... stole this little girl. He strangled her and then sexually assaulted her body, and stuck her in a trunk in his basement. Destiny was nothing to him. Nothing.
Because I don't watch the news or television, I didn't know about this kidnapping. But when I was 'blog-hopping' today over lunch, I learned of this event - and the tragic outcome. So if any of my co-workers might be wondering, this is why I burst in to tears while sitting at my desk - and started yelling profanity at my computer monitor.
Destiny was five. Five. Years. Old.
She was quite possibly, not yet in Kindergarten.
She was quite possibly, at an age where she still needed her Mommy and Daddy to help her take a bath at night and get dressed in her pajamas.
She was most definitely, at an age where she still slept with a lovey.
She was five years old.
I broke down in tears. I couldn't stop crying. Not at work - and not during the entire drive home. I had flashbacks to Polly Klaas in 1993. That horrible event unfolded only miles from our house while Charlie and I were at college in Northern California. Yet, I felt more grief than imaginable thinking of Destiny. Maybe because I'm a Mom now, and I think of my own children. The horror, pain and nausea that wracked my body today - it was real.
I talked with Charlie about my "reaction" tonight over dinner. I started my sentence with "I just can't imagine what her family is going through ...." and then I stopped myself. I can imagine what they are going though. They are living every parent's worst possible nightmare.
When our babies first came home from the hospital - I happened to have some "down time" (i.e. I was vegging out in front of the TV while pumping) and I caught a segment on Oprah. This was the one Oprah show, I wish I had missed because I've never been the same, since. The story was about sexual predators. Oprah had an individual on her show that had set a trap and busted a
That's right. Five. Months. Old.
Yay that they caught THAT malicious, piece of evil crap. But the fact that these creton exist who would commit such heinous crimes - literally keeps me awake at night.
The mere existence of these monsters is what makes me triple check every night before bed that all the doors and windows to our home are locked.
The mere existence of these monsters is what makes me check the internet to find out where convicted sexual predators live in our neighborhood.
The mere existence of these monsters makes me realize that not all of them have been caught ... and as such ... I must exercise diligence ALL THE TIME.
Even with all the precautions I have in place ... most nights ... I will get up, at least once, to check on our children, as they sleep.
How any one could possibly harm one of God's most perfect creations - an innocent child - is completely beyond me.
Even though I pray for patience, tolerance and compassion every single night ... when it comes to these monsters ... I have nothing of the sort. "Throw them to the dogs" ... that's what I say. "Public executions" ... that's what Charlie says. As much as I try to have love and compassion in my heart - no where, in any shape or form, do I see God's Fingerprints on these horrific situations.
Never will I stop my prayers for all the children of the world. But tonight, I am praying especially hard for beautiful little Destiny and her family. May they find peace and comfort ...and somewhere in the ugliness of this situation ... may they also find God's Fingerprints.
I desperately wish I could.